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 The Indian Cricket League (ICL) Another Kerry Packer? 
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Post The Indian Cricket League (ICL) Another Kerry Packer?
The Indian Cricket League (ICL) Another Kerry Packer?
by: Iftikhar Rasul

"Discovery" "Diligence" "Display" is a 3D strategy of the Indian Cricket League (ICL)!

Will it work? Or die as many hypes end? Million dollar questions need historic answers.

But there is no doubt that the ICL has played another Kerry Packer. You know the sports are a multi million dollar enterprise all over the world. Sporting activities also much verified channels for advancing business interests. Keeping in mind the lucrative advantages, the Indian Cricket League (ICL) has invited acquaintances to go forward in this direction. Moreover sports are an area where diligent performance and achievements create an international image of success .The ICL wants to attain this status for India .It wants India to be a global giant in the field of cricket. The authors of the Indian Cricket League (ICL) claim that they are striving to get the superman status for Indian cricket. This aim has urged them to establish an independent and free organization to develop cricket.

Motto of ICL

Discovery, Diligence and Display is the slogan of the ICL and it is the ultimate aim of its creation too. Indian Cricket League (ICL) aims at discovering a pool of such cricketers who are able to become champions through diligence and display of good aggressive cricket. Cricket is a national obsession and has achieved the eminence of a religion in India. It has become a symbol of national pride. Cricket is the only sport where India has the prospective to become a champion of the world. So many former cricketers laid heads together to sort out a device to obtain supremacy in this field and they created ICL or the Indian Cricket league the first private professional international cricket league.

Why ICL?

ICL Claims following reasons of its creation:

• About only 20 players are on the contracts of BCCI and these are not enough to produce high quality cricketers. Reserve bench production is the main problem. The solution to this problem is only possible by upgrading the domestic cricket. The ICL will help the youngsters to bear the rigors of cricket world.

• There is a wide chasm between the facilities provided to the national and local players. To minimize the wide difference in facilities provided to the national team and the local or regional teams will be very useful for reaping the crop of good cricketers. These differences are a major hindrance in the way of the youngsters to show their real worth. The regional players lack facilities and chances to become tycoons of cricket only due to lack of funds and guidance. The Indian Cricket League (ICL) will fill up this gap.

• The regional cricket boards only have the BCCI as a provider of funds, infrastructure and nursery. That is why the regional players are devoid of all the benefits in spite of possessing extraordinary talent. The ICL would start developing cricket from grass root level.

• Performance of the Indian team in the recent past was not up to the mark. The proponents of the Indian Cricket League (ICL) claim that it was only due to the non availability of the proper resources and facilities to the players. The private league would provide the players with all the possible resources and would try to boost up their performance.

• For Indian fans who worship their heroes and especially the cricketers the poor performance are only due to the political influence .The ICL promises to keep the politics and cricket wide apart.

Conspiracy theories?

The antagonists are not of the same opinion as is put forwarded by the officials of the Indian Cricket League (ICL). They have their own arguments. The first and foremost argument in this regard is that:

o Essel group wants to exploit the Indian fans who are disappointed by the performance of the board and infrastructure of the BCCI.

o Essel group is the partner of the ZEE telefilms and wanted to take revenge from the BCCI of denying the rights to telecast the previous world cup. The BCCI denied them the cricket content so they had to create their own content.

o The ICL has planned to utilize the opportunity to make both ends meet. Indian team's failures have led to minimum earnings to the broadcasters, advertisers, sponsors and travel & tour operators.It is the best time to fish in the troubled waters.

o The Essel group pecuniary aims only and has taken these initiatives to establish ICL.

What the cricketing world thinks about the ICL


The International Cricket Council (ICC) which is the governing body of world cricket has not accepted or rejected the ICL eyt. It says that it would follow the footsteps of the Indian cricket board.


BCCI the board of control for cricket in India has taken harsh steps to prevent the success of the ICL. It has decided to ban the players as well officials who would take any part in the management of the league. Kapil Dev was their fist victim. On the contrary they have launched the Indian premier league with pomp and show. The BCCI says that it would use all its resources to stop the progress of the ICL.The BCCI has taken many parallel steps to mitigate the effects of the Indian Cricket League (ICL). It is offering very warm welcome to the IPL while denying and hindering the ICL. ICL filed a petition against BCCI in the Delhi High Court and the Delhi High Court ruled in favor of Indian Cricket League ICL directing that players should not be suffered in this battle of giants.


Pakistan cricket board has also decided to oppose the involvement of its players in the ICL.It has also announced many stringent measures for the players who would participate in the ICL.

Public opinion

The lovers of the cricket in India and all over the world have appreciated the formation of ICL. They are of the view that it would free the cricket from the clutches of mafias and monopolistic attitude of the officials. Various government bodies have supported and boosted the league. Many states and their Chief Ministers are also in favor of the ICL. The cricketers themselves have welcomed its creation and have shown great interest for its success. Damien Martyn, Brian Lara, Inzamam-ul-Haq, Imran Farhat, Abdul Razzaq, Azhar Mahmood, Chris Read, Darren Maddy, Vikram Solanki, Paul Nixon, Chris Harris, Chris Cairns, Hamish Marshall, Nathan Astle, Lance Klusener, Nicky Boje, Boyd Rankin, Niall O'Brien and Dinesh Mongia are a few names that have registered themselves in the ICL. A lot of others are in the waiting line.

Format of ICL

The ICL was set up with Rs. 1 billion, and has prize money of $ 1 million for the winner. Initially the ICL would be comprised of six teams. The number of teams would be increased to sixteen in next three years. Each team will be coached by an international cricketer and will be consisted of four international, two Indian and eight blooming domestic players. BCCI has been told that it is free to hire from ICL's talent pool. The league was materialized in November 2007 with matches in the Twenty20 format.

Board of ICL

An expert panel of ex-cricketers headed by Kapil Dev has been appointed as the board of ICL. The other members include Tony Greig, Dean Jones and Kiran More. The board positions will be paid position. A lucrative package has been announced for them. An ombudsman has also been appointed to look into the grievances of the players.


ICL announced its expansion, with a fifty over tournament in February 2008, and then the ICL Indian Championship with eight teams in September and October 2008. Subhash Chandra the owner and the maker of the ICL had vowed that the ICL will go ahead in spite of all the oddities. Though many government bodies have opposed ICL, the players of international repute have joined it, "Mayajal" a private Indian sector has provided infrastructure.

Yet future of ICL brings many speculations. Would it be able to sustain the official pressure of different boards? Or it would die like many other private cricket leagues? Is a big question. Would it last for few years like the league of Kerry Packer of Australia or other such leagues or it would be a forerunner for the other cricketing countries as a success story. Time is the best judge!

About The Author
Iftikhar Rasul offers critical details on International and Pakistan Cricket, Pakistan Cricket Board and Pakistan Team Players Performance at His spiky opinions may be disagreed but can't be disregarded.

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Mon Feb 28, 2011 11:11 am
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